Earlier this month, a privileged 0.002 per cent of the global population descended on Las Vegas to witness… "The Future". I watched via Twitter as the Consumer Electronics Show entertained 170,000 delegates with big ideas, smartwatches, self-driving cars and artificial intelligence. Let’s be clear, CES is technological-peacocking at its most extreme – but, among all the hyperbole, our task is to translate the big tech trends into tangible everyday tactics. In the future, devices and data will demand closer collaboration between medium and message, and how will that impact our day-to-day in driving sales, efficiency and engagement for our clients? How will it look on a media plan?
For me, the most exciting glimpse of the future from #CES2015 was the trend towards the true digitisation of the individual – or the Internet of Me. Less smart TV and more smart everything – the personalised web experience, which is apparently "The Future" – from the second someone wakes up to last thing at night.
But moving our thinking away from machines to media, the Internet of Me is about satisfying the new consumer’s demands for a fully digitised and bespoke experience. For marketers, it means people’s needs being served better, not endless irrelevant ads being served that interrupt at the wrong moment.
The Internet of Me is about satisfying the new consumer's demands for a fully digitised and bespoke experience
In media, we haven’t focused enough on the "me" – historically, we’ve planned quantitatively to take our most informed guess about what people will be watching, reading or walking past during certain times of the day, week or year. But to successfully deliver on the Internet of Me, only personalisation and usefulness will do.
For example, Nike recently used the huge amount of consumer data it has aggregated over the years to deliver more than 100,000 personalised videos (tinyurl.com/pnqswyv) – a huge task that only a brand visionary can accomplish. And TapSense’s new programmatic platform for the Apple Watch is no doubt going to set the standard for how relevant content should be on the most personal of devices. To achieve this requires media and creative to work closer together to make sure such highly targeted messaging can be used to enrich people’s lives.
If last year was all about serendipity, 2015 is about authenticity and meaningful connections with every consumer. It means getting the right skillsets in the room to understand what personalisation looks like from a data and content perspective – and you won’t be ready for true personalisation until that’s been done. So while I’m convinced that this is the most exciting digital movement we may see over the next ten years, we need to get everyone involved in the trends in order to get the other 99.998 per cent of the world as excited as we are.
Paul Frampton is the chief executive of Havas Media UK